Self Harm A Silent Problem
I was very moved reading about how one of our greatest Olympiads, Dame Kelly Holmes self harmed every day she was experiencing potentially career ending injuries. She described it as a way to release the anguish she was experiencing. This is common place, and I have seen it many times in my own practice.
People often misunderstand why people self harm. Those who have never experienced it can find it difficult to understand why a person would do something so counter intuitive. People generally endeavour to avoid harm, for a person to inflict that which we generally try to avoid can be a difficult thing to understand.
Self harm is a way to emotionally release pain through a physical stimuli, such as cutting. For some this is the only way that they feel able to release their emotions. In other words, crying for physical pain is more acceptable than crying for emotional or psychological pain.
Dame Kelly’s revelations are important for a number of reasons. First as a means of people suffering seeing that they are not alone in their suffering. Also, it is a brave thing to do, a great athlete a Dame of the Realm admitting her struggles will hopefully make it easier for other people to recognise their pain and to get the help needed for it. I have said it many times, this is a truly honourable way for a person to use celebrity to help their fellow men and women.